The first place you should start is with a multivitamin. This lays the foundation and gives your body the basic nutrition it needs.
But you don't want to stop at only a multivitamin because your body could use so much more.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 fatty acids (such as EPA and DHA) have been shown to help lower triglycerides, stroke and heart disease risk, help with blood pressure, and have also been shown to be helpful in dealing with rheumatoid arthritis, depression, asthma, ADHD, Alzheimer's, and dementia.i
Most of us don't get nearly enough vitamin C in our diet. Vitamin C is essential for collagen production, wound healing, the absorption of iron, and our immune system. Since vitamin C is rapidly used in the body, look for a sustained-release form.ii
Vitamin D is essential for calcium metabolism; if you want healthy bones you need vitamin D. Vitamin D also supports our immune system and having optimum blood levels of Vitamin D may be helpful in cardiovascular health and may reduce your risk of certain cancers, and even depression.iii
The B vitamins help regulate carbohydrate, fat, and protein metabolism. They help with DNA synthesis and repair, help to lower homocysteine, and are helpful for functions from stress management to energy metabolism.iv
Vitamin K is not as well known as other nutrients, but it is essential to our health and generally lacking in our diet because we don't eat enough green leafy vegetables. Vitamin K is essential for bone mineralization, normal blood clotting, and wound healing.v
Most people know that calcium is important for bones and osteoporosis is a major concern with our aging society, but calcium is also helpful for maintaining normal blood pressure, and may play a role in weight loss.vi
Antioxidants are essential for protecting our bodies against free-radical damage–which may be one of the reasons why we age. The best sources of antioxidants are fruits and vegetables; look for supplements containing vitamins C, E, beta-carotene, lycopene, lutein, zinc, and selenium.vii
While not a nutrient, probiotics make our list because they are essential for proper digestive functioning. Probiotics are microorganisms that support the normal functioning of the whole digestive tract and may reduce the tendencies many have for constipation and diarrhea. They also help with excessive gas and even conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome.viii
Lutein and Lycopene
These vitamin-like compounds found in food are great antioxidants.ix They also support a strong immune system and help maintain overall wellness and long-term health of the eyes, heart, skin and lungs.
i Fetterman JW Jr, Zdanowicz MM. Therapeutic potential of n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids in disease. Am J Health Syst Pharm. 2009 Jul 1;66(13):1169-79. PMID: 19535655.
ii Deruelle F, Baron B. Vitamin C: is supplementation necessary for optimal health? J Altern Complement Med. 2008 Dec;14(10):1291-8. PMID: 19032072.
iii Marcinowska-Suchowierska E, Walicka M, Tałałaj M, Horst-Sikorska W,et al. Vitamin D supplementation in adults-guidelines. Endokrynol Pol. 2010 Nov-Dec;61(6):723-9. PMID:21104649.
iv Thompson J. Vitamins and minerals 4: overview of folate and the B vitamins. Community Pract. 2006 Jun;79(6):197-8. PMID: 16780289.
v Iwamoto J, Sato Y, Takeda T, Matsumoto H. High-dose vitamin K supplementation reduces fracture incidence in postmenopausal women: a review of the literature. Nutr Res. 2009 Apr;29(4):221-8. PMID: 19410972.
vi Shahar DR, Schwarzfuchs D, Fraser D, et al. Dairy calcium intake, serum vitamin D, and successful weight loss. Am J Clin Nutr. 2010 Nov;92(5):1017-22. PMID: 20810979. vii Fusco D, Colloca G, Lo Monaco MR, Cesari M. Effects of antioxidant supplementation on the aging process. Clin Interv Aging. 2007;2(3):377-87. PMID: 18044188.
viii Veerappan GR, Betteridge J, Young PE. Probiotics for the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease. Curr Gastroenterol Rep. 2012 Aug;14(4):324-33. PubMed PMID: 22581276. ix Khachik F, Beecher GR, Smith JC Jr. Lutein, lycopene, and their oxidative metabolites in chemoprevention of cancer. J Cell Biochem Suppl. 1995;22:236-46.PMID: 8538204.
Shaklee Corporation - Last update: 03/13/13